‘Jump to it’ – Goodbye Queen of Soul!

Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul, passed away last week. We all mourn the loss of this incredible woman and her once-in-a-generation voice. Watching the news clips and reading the tributes to her, I was struck by how Aretha and her music continued to be relevant for so many years. She was truly one of the greats.

All those films of Aretha’s concerts took me back in time. It was like a flashback of the last 50 years – the clothes, the hairstyles, the politics, and of course, the music. It was a trip down memory lane, regretfully inspired by a sad occasion.

Visiting the ALI thrift shop can be a trip back in time, too. Our stock varies according to what’s been donated to us, but we usually have antique china (from teacups to entire sets of dishes) and silver. Our housewares section is full of kitchen things you’ll remember (and wish you hadn’t thrown away), like avocado green skillets and tupperware in all different sizes. Our music CDs, DVDs, and books will yield classics for your entertainment library.

Come in our shop if you’re feeling nostalgic (or even if you’re not). You never know what you might discover – you might even find an Aretha Franklin CD!

 

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STAY COOL AND HELP A GOOD CAUSE!

We’re going to let you in on a secret. The ALI thrift store has something you desperately need. Something that, for much of your life, you have felt that you couldn’t live without. Something that will rejuvenate your body, make your thinking clearer, and calm your spirit. We have . . . Air conditioning!

Yes, when you visit the thrift shop you’ll be able to shop in comfort. AND right now you’ll be supporting our Operation School Bell program, which gears up in August every year. OSB provides school clothing and school supplies to low-income students in the Irvine Unified School District. Last year we helped almost 800 kids at a cost of approximately $130,000. We expect the numbers to be similar this coming school year. This money comes directly from the sales at our thrift shop!

So when you step into our shop, three things happen:

  • You cool off
  • You find great bargains
  • You help your Irvine neighbors in need

It’s not too hot to shop – head over to the thrift shop now!

ALERT! ALERT! ALERT!

It seems like practically every night there’s a weather alert on the evening news for the midwest. Or the east coast. Or the central plains. Do the TV stations in all those states have weather alerts right now for California? “WEATHER ALERT IN IRVINE! TEMPERATURES IN THE HIGH 80S! ALARMING VIDEO SHOWS SHOPPERS FIGHTING OVER SHORTAGES OF SUNSCREEN!”

We’ll probably have plenty of weather alerts of our own as the year goes on. But what we do have is a CUTE CLOTHES ALERT! The ALI thrift shop is brimming with the cutest tops, pants, and jackets imaginable. Spring colors, spring fashions, spring textures – and because we’re in southern California (not those OTHER places), you can actually WEAR all these cute spring clothes RIGHT NOW!

There are NO weather alerts to stop you, so head over to the thrift shop and check out all the cute clothes that are waiting for you. (And if you’re THAT kind of person, take a picture of yourself sitting next to the flowers on your patio in your new outfit, and send it to all your relatives who are still dealing with winter weather.)

It’s the most wonderful time of the year and we know why!

The weather was so hot last week in Irvine, I think we’re going to have to change the old saying, “Never wear white after Labor Day” to “Never wear white after Thanksgiving.” Of course, there’s summer white (what you wear while you’re lounging around the pool) and winter white (what you wear while you’re lounging around the fireplace at the ski cabin). And winter white means snowflakes – sleigh bells – Christmas trees – Hanukkah presents – and the ALI thrift shop’s eagerly-awaited annual holiday spectacular!

Yes, it’s “the most wonderful time of the year,” as the song goes, starting at the thrift shop on WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 8. Our 2017 holiday merchandise will be out in the shop that morning, and you won’t believe what absolutely beautiful things we have. Our donors went overboard this past year giving us gorgeous Christmas and Hanukkah items, along with fabulous winter clothes and ski jackets.

Whether you want to completely redo your home and your wardrobe for the holidays, or just add something new, you’ll find what you’re looking for at the thrift shop. Our doors open at 10 am on Wednesday 11/8, so be there early for the best selection! And we’ll be putting out new items every day, so stop by often!

Looking for the perfect gift?

We’ve all had to deal with it. Finding a present for that hard-to-please person. Or the person who would be pleased with anything, but seems to have everything. Or your mother, who says she “needs clothes,” but has a list of requirements for the clothes (nothing scratchy, nothing with buttons, nothing in purple) that would drive a personal stylist crazy. Or something for all the teenagers who volunteered at your church food drive, that works for both girls and boys and doesn’t cost much.

The Assistance League of Irvine Thrift Shop has a solution – a GIFT CERTIFICATE to the shop! These cost $5 each, and you can buy as many as you want! Your hard-to-please friend, your easy-to-please friend, your mother, and your volunteers can pick out whatever they want from our ever-changing stock of clothing, home decor, and household gadgets (plus books, toys, and puzzles). They’ll have the thrill of finding something they really want. You’ll have the thrill of knowing your gift won’t sit in the closet. And both of you will have the satisfaction of knowing the purchase is supporting a good cause.

To purchase a gift certificate, just come into the Assistance League of Irvine Thrift Shop and tell one of our members at the checkout counter you’d like to buy one (or two . . . Or several . . .). It will be the easiest (and the most fun) gift you buy all year!

5 things you always want to know about the Thrift Shop (but didn’t ask)

FIVE THINGS YOU ALWAYS WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT THE THRIFT SHOP (BUT DIDN’T WANT TO ASK BECAUSE YOU’RE SURE EVERYONE KNOWS THE ANSWER BUT YOU)

1. Where does your merchandise come from?

It comes from donations! Everything we sell has been donated to us – we don’t purchase any items for resale.  We accept donations at our back door (around the rear of the building) any time that the shop is open (on Fridays we take donations until 3 pm).

2. Why are the price tags different colors?

It’s an inventory management system that allows us to know how long an item has been in the store.  You don’t want to see the same things on the shelves month after month – and neither do we! Every month we change to a different colored tag, and after a certain period of time, we pull all the remaining items in that color.  The only exception is white tags, which are used for holiday merchandise and some of our specialty items such as antiques.  Besides – it’s more interesting to have different colors!

3.  What’s upstairs?

The second floor contains our Community Outreach Center, where we meet with clients of our different philanthropies such as Operation School Bell.  We also have an office, a small conference room, and our new mezzanine, where we store donations.

4.  What do you do with donations you can’t use?

We pass these items on to other non-profit groups.  Most of the donations that aren’t in good enough shape for our shop are given to the Salvation Army.  We also give things to several non-profits that aid veterans or the homeless, the Irvine Animal Care Center, and the Irvine Valley College Drama Department (they’re thrilled to get “vintage” clothing to use for costumes!).

5.  If I want to volunteer at the thrift shop, what do I do?

Tell one of our members at the shop (with the blue aprons!) that you’re interested.  We have several levels of volunteer support, from full ALI members to “community volunteers” who want to see if this experience is right for them.  We’ll ask you to fill out an interest form, and then our membership chair will contact you!

NO DEBATE ABOUT THIS!

I don’t know about you, but I’m TIRED of hearing about debates. I’m starting to feel that what began as a good idea has morphed into a huge uncontrollable thing that occupies all our attention for weeks on end. Kind of like when you start out with a nice little baby, and then it grows into . . . a teenager.

Now there are a lot of things we can debate, in politics and in life (dogs v. cats, vanilla v. chocolate, the Angels v. the Dodgers, leaving the seat up v. leaving the seat down, and on and on). But one thing that there’s NO DEBATE on: the ALI thrift store is the place to shop!

Whether it’s clothes, shoes, housewares, gifts, toys, or timeless treasures, you’ll always find great quality, great prices, and no sales tax when you shop with us. And the money we make at the shop goes to support our programs here in Irvine, so you’re helping people in your community, too.

The ONLY debate you’ll have when you visit Assistance League of Irvine will be: how much stuff should I buy?  SHOP NOW